Manchester United vs Chelsea: 3 things to watch out for
Manchester United will face Chelsea on Sunday at Old Trafford in a crucial English Premier League match. United now have 64 points from 35 matches, and are in sixth position in the league table. They are going through a lean patch though, and have lost 7 of their last 9 games, including one against city rivals Manchester City.
United have actually struggled since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was made the full-time manager in March. However, they could turn things around with a win against Chelsea on Sunday.
Chelsea have a slender lead over United and Arsenal in the league table with 66 points from 35 matches. They split points with Burnley, a team lurking in the bottom half of the table, at home last Monday.
United will break into the top four if they manage to beat the Blues on Sunday. On the other hand, a victory would strengthen Chelsea’s chances of finishing inside the top four.
Here, we take a look at the three things to watch out for in Sunday’s match.
#1 United’s sluggish defence against the wily Hazard
United’s defenders have had a torrid time in the last few matches, and would have the unenviable task of containing Eden Hazard, the Chelsea forward.
Hazard has 19 goals and 13 assists in all competitions so far, and would fancy his chances of scoring against a sluggish United back 4. Both Chris Smalling and Phil Jones are on the slower side, and might struggle against Hazard’s pace and agility.
If Chelsea decide to start with Gonzalo Higuain and Pedro along with Hazard, it would be a welcome relief for the United defenders, as both Higuain and Pedro are ageing and have lost some pace over the years.
United should ponder the idea of playing Victor Lindelof as their right-back and Ashley Young as their left-back in order to counter the attacking threats from Chelsea. Lindelof is primarily a central defender, and should do well against Hazard on the right side of United’s defence.